Not all salt is created equal

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Not all salt is created equal

Rock salt, sea salt, table salt – what’s the difference

It’s true that salt is vital to life, but it is also true that not all salt is created equal. Rock salts and sea salts are unrefined and contain many important trace elements that encourage healthy cellular metabolism. Table salt, on the other hand, is refined and stripped of all trace elements before anti-caking agents and iodine is added. In fact, table salt cannot be properly digested by the human body and when consumed it is toxic to the body’s natural processes, leading to cellular inflammation; water retention and cardiovascular disease.

The truth about iodized salt

A recent study out of Harvard presented such evidence to the tune of 2.3 million deaths worldwide in 2010 from heart attacks, strokes and other heart-related diseases linked to excessive salt intake. And don’t be fooled, iodized salt will not increase your body’s iodine levels. Instead, iodine should be supplied from seafood, kelp and seaweed, eggs, cereals and grains. In fact, research has shown that people who eat processed foods are at risk of iodine overdose and related health problems including overactive or inflamed thyroid, which can lead to tremors, disturbed heart rhythm, sleep disorders, increased blood pressure and anxiety and nervousness.

Choose mineral-rich “colored” salt

The best thing you can do for your salt balance is to eliminate canned and refined foods from your diet, and closely monitor your intake of processed salt. Stay away from foods that list “sodium chloride” on the label.

If for some reason you don’t have a label to guide you, color is also an indicator. Refined salt is pure white, whereas unrefined salts are greyish white or pink due to their mineral content. Consider switching to Himalayan crystal salt instead. Packed with 84 of the same minerals and elements found naturally in the human body, Himalayan crystal salt helps control water levels within the body; promotes a stable pH balance inside cells (including the brain); supports blood sugar health; improves cardiorespiratory function; and helps to reduce muscle cramps and increase bone strength.

Sea salt may contain pollutants

Natural sea salts, while better than table salt, come from evaporated seawater and may contain toxins and pollutants not found in Himalayan salt. Harvested all over the world, varieties of sea salt may contain different trace minerals that may alter the taste and color of the product.

One thing all salts do have in common though is that they are all 40 percent sodium. And despite the average daily intake being five to six grams, we actually need only 1,500 mg of sodium per day. If you have questions or concerns about your salt intake, or the best source of salt, talk with your naturopathic doctor.